Obtaining a commercial plumbing licence in Western Australia can be a challenging but rewarding process for those who want to pursue a career in the plumbing industry. A commercial plumbing licence allows you to legally carry out plumbing work on commercial and industrial buildings, which includes installing and maintaining plumbing systems such as gas, water, and drainage.
In Western Australia, the Plumbing Licensing Board (PLB) is responsible for regulating and licensing plumbing work, and they have strict requirements for obtaining a commercial plumbing licence. If you’re interested in becoming a plumber, Fremantle Plumbing wants to help. This article will guide you through the steps you need to take to become a licensed commercial plumber in Western Australia.
Step 1: Meet the eligibility requirements
Before you can apply for a commercial plumbing licence in Western Australia, you need to make sure you meet the eligibility requirements set out by the PLB. These requirements include:
- You must be at least 18 years old.
- You must have completed an apprenticeship or hold a Certificate III in Plumbing.
- You must be a fit and proper person to hold a plumbing licence.
- If you have completed an apprenticeship, you will need to provide evidence of this when you apply for your plumbing licence. If you don’t have an apprenticeship, you will need to hold a Certificate III in Plumbing or an equivalent qualification. If you have qualifications from outside of Western Australia, you will need to have them assessed by the Trades Recognition Australia (TRA).
What if I haven’t done an apprenticeship or don’t hold a Certificate III in plumbing?
To complete an apprenticeship in plumbing, you would need to find an employer who is willing to take you on as an apprentice. The employer would then register you with an apprenticeship centre, and you would typically spend the next four years learning on the job while attending classes at a TAFE (Technical and Further Education) institute. During the apprenticeship, you would learn about various aspects of plumbing, including installation and maintenance of water and gas systems, drainage systems, and sanitation systems.
To obtain a Certificate III in Plumbing, you would need to complete a recognised plumbing training course. These courses are usually offered by TAFE institutes or private registered training organisations (RTOs). The Certificate III in Plumbing course typically takes two to three years to complete, depending on whether you study full-time or part-time. The course covers a range of topics, including plumbing regulations and standards, water and gas installation requirements, and drainage and sanitation systems. You would also complete practical training and assessments to demonstrate your skills and knowledge.
Once you have completed either an apprenticeship or a Certificate III in Plumbing, you would then need to provide evidence of your qualifications when applying for your commercial plumbing licence in Western Australia.
Step 2: Complete the application
Once you have met the eligibility requirements, you can submit an application for a plumbing licence to the PLB. The application will require you to provide evidence of your qualifications, experience, and references. You will also need to pay the application fee.
When completing your application, you will need to provide the following information:
- Your personal details, including your name, address, and contact details.
- Details of your plumbing qualifications, including the name of the qualification, the date it was obtained, and the name of the institution that provided it.
- Details of your plumbing experience, including the type of work you have done, the number of years you have been working as a plumber, and the name of the companies you have worked for.
- Two references from people who can vouch for your plumbing skills and experience.
If you’re ready to apply for your plumbing licence in Western Australia, you can do so here.
Step 3: Pass the technical exam
To become a licensed commercial plumber in Western Australia, you will need to pass a technical exam to demonstrate your knowledge of plumbing codes, regulations, and safety practices. The exam covers a range of topics, including:
- Plumbing regulations and standards.
- Water and gas installation requirements.
- Drainage and sewerage systems.
- Health and safety requirements.
- Environmental regulations and requirements.
- The PLB offers study guides and resources to help you prepare for the exam. It’s important to take the time to study and prepare for the exam to give yourself the best chance of passing.
Step 4: Provide proof of insurance
To obtain a commercial plumbing licence in Western Australia, you will need to provide proof of public liability and workers’ compensation insurance. Public liability insurance protects you against any claims for damage or injury caused to third parties as a result of your plumbing work. Workers’ compensation insurance covers you for any injuries or illnesses you may suffer as a result of your work.
It’s important to choose an insurance provider that offers policies specifically designed for plumbing work. You will need to provide the PLB with proof of insurance before your licence can be issued.
Step 5: Pay the fee
Once you have met all of the requirements and your application has been approved, you will need to pay the required fee for the licence. The fee varies depending on the type of licence you are applying for and the length of time you want to hold the licence. To pay the fee for your commercial plumbing licence in Western Australia, you will need to submit your application and payment to the Plumbing Licensing Board (PLB). The fee can be paid by credit card, check, or money order.
When paying the fee, it’s important to make sure that you provide all the required information and documentation, as well as any additional fees that may be required. Once your payment has been processed, the PLB will review your application and notify you of the status of your licence application. The fee amount is subject to change—you can check the costs for the licence you’re pursuing here.
Step 6: Renew your licence
Once you have obtained your commercial plumbing licence in Western Australia, you will need to renew it annually to keep it valid. You will also need to complete any required continuing education courses to maintain your licence.
The PLB requires licensed plumbers to complete a minimum of 12 points of continuing education every year. These points can be obtained through a range of activities, including attending workshops and seminars, completing online courses, and undertaking workplace training.
Renewing your licence and completing continuing education courses is important to ensure that you stay up-to-date with the latest plumbing regulations and safety practices. It also helps you to maintain your skills and knowledge so that you can continue to provide high-quality plumbing services to your clients.
What are the benefits of obtaining a commercial plumbing licence?
There are several benefits to applying for a commercial plumbing licence, including:
- Legal ability to work on commercial and industrial buildings: A commercial plumbing licence allows you to legally carry out plumbing work on commercial and industrial buildings. This expands your scope of work and provides you with new opportunities to work on larger and more complex plumbing projects.
- Higher earning potential: A commercial plumbing licence can lead to higher earning potential. Commercial plumbing projects tend to be more complex and require specialised knowledge and skills, which can command higher rates.
- Professional credibility: Obtaining a commercial plumbing licence demonstrates your commitment to your profession and your dedication to providing high-quality plumbing services. It can also enhance your professional reputation and help you stand out in a competitive market.
- Career advancement: A commercial plumbing licence can lead to career advancement opportunities. With a licence in hand, you can pursue leadership roles in your workplace or start your own plumbing business.
- Increased safety: By obtaining a commercial plumbing licence, you demonstrate your knowledge of plumbing regulations and safety practices. This helps to ensure that the plumbing work you carry out is safe for you, your clients, and the environment.
Overall, obtaining a commercial plumbing licence can provide you with new opportunities, higher earning potential, and greater professional credibility. It can also help you to stay up-to-date with the latest plumbing regulations and safety practices, which is essential for maintaining a successful plumbing career.
Want to work for Fremantle Plumbing?
We don’t blame you. Fremantle Plumbing has been a mainstay in the Perth area for over 75 years and have been providing quality plumbing services to our community ever since. Check out our job vacancies here.
Obtaining a commercial plumbing licence in Western Australia requires a combination of education, training, and experience. It can be a challenging process, but the rewards are worth it. A commercial plumbing licence allows you to legally carry out plumbing work on commercial and industrial buildings, which can provide you with a stable and rewarding career.
All of our plumbers at Fremantle Plumbing are qualified plumbers with extensive industry experience. Whether you require plumbing maintenance or an emergency plumber Perth, simply get a free quote or book online here.